Hong Kong to host ASE 2013
The Asian Seafood Exposition, one of the region’s most important exhibitions for buyers and suppliers of fresh, frozen and packaged seafood, today announced that there will be a special focus on premium seafood products when the show returns to Hong Kong this year from September 3-5, 2013.
Scheduled to take place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, the industry’s signature trade event annually attracts over 6,000 buyers from 50 countries and more than 150 exhibiting companies from 25 countries including China, Japan, Korea, Australia, Canada and the United States.
According to Mary Larkin, Vice President of Seafood Expositions at Diversified Business Communications, the organization that produces the Asian Seafood Exposition, the rationale behind showcasing a greater variety of premium seafood this year originates from increasing demand in China for higher value products such as lobster, crab, abalone, scallops, oysters, mussels and caviar.
Ms. Larkin explains, “Rising wealth and income levels in China are creating an increasing appetite for premium seafood products, both domestic and imported, which in turn is providing new opportunities for producers and exporters of high-end fish and seafood products.”
Research indicates that there is a strong link between income growth and seafood consumption. With seafood culturally considered to be both healthy and prestigious on the mainland, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations predicts that seafood consumption in China is likely to rise from the current average levels of 12 kilograms per person to 36 kilograms by 2020.
In addition, China has emerged as the world’s largest exporter of seafood mainly supplying affordable fish and shellfish to markets such as Japan, Europe and the United States. The FAO reports that the mainland has overtaken second-placed Norway and third-placed Thailand having grown its seafood exports from USD 3.6 billion in 2001 to USD 17.1 billion in 2011.
In terms of why Hong Kong was selected as the location for this year’s Asian Seafood Exposition, Ms. Larkin remarks that the territory is well positioned as a re-export centre for seafood products in Asia.
“Hong Kong possesses a modern and efficient port terminal and free port status, making it a critical hub for the Asian seafood market. In fact, 30-40 percent of seafood imported into Hong Kong is re-exported to markets such as the United States, mainland China, Macau, Taiwan and Vietnam.”
Ms. Larkin also points out that Hong Kong itself enjoys a growing and competitive seafood market. Figures released by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service reflect that the value of Hong Kong’s seafood market is approximately USD 2.68 billion, comprising local supplies of USD 128 million, and USD 2.55 billion worth of imported seafood products.
Co-located with Restaurant & Bar Hong Kong, the 2013 Asian Seafood Exposition offers participants the opportunity to not only source international fish and seafood products, but to network and develop relationships with key players in the industry from suppliers of fish and seafood processing and packaging technology, to providers of transportation and freight forwarding services.
“Ultimately, the event provides an unparalleled platform for those seeking to penetrate the strong, growing Asian seafood market,” concludes Ms. Larkin.
“This is particularly significant given that the Asia Pacific today represents a number of nations with the highest seafood consumption per capita, as well as countries whose fisheries and aquaculture production industries are becoming an increasing contributor to their national economies.”
Visit www.asianseafoodexpo.com for more information on the 2013 Asian Seafood Exposition and register to attend.